A video of a junior minister in Liberia splashing expensive champagne on a luxury vehicle that he had reportedly bought for his wife as a birthday gift has sparked anger, especially among young supporters of the governing Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) party.
The CDC’s youth wing describes James Emmanuel Potter’s action last week as “a reckless display of wealth”.
It says it contradicts the principles and ideology on which the party was established.
It accused the official – who is in charge of logistics at the presidency – of being insensitive to the realty of the time, in one of Africa’s poorest countries.
But the assistant minister hit back at his critics, saying in a Facebook post that he was a working person earning a salary to enable him do whatever pleased him.
One Facebook user criticised the assistant minister’s actions saying: “[Mr] Potter bought his wife an Audi SUV and sprayed it with expensive bottles of champagne while the masses suffer. Is this pro-poor?”
Another user commented: “That’s one reason they’re poor after government job. They live in luxury at the expense of the suffering poor people!”
Others have defended the state official.
“there is no big deal about a husband buying a car for wife. He is working and I truly believe his income can afford this little vehicle. Stop this hate,” one said.